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Fidel Castro Leader Of The Cuban Revolution History Essay
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This paper will discuss the social issues present throughout Cuba during the late twentieth century as well as the early twenty-first century. The information compiled will relate to healthcare, education and Cuban lifestyle. More specifically, this paper shall highlight the distinct improvements attributed solely to Fidel Castro.
Fidel Alejandro Castro Ruz was born on August 16th, 1926, in Mayari, Cuba. He was educated at the University of Havana in law, where he also studied politics. His political ideas were formed throughout these years, and he joined several student political groups devoted to helping the poor workers and peasants.
Fidel Castro is an embodiment of post-development theory, he exemplified this through his domestic policy changes. Cuban social issues such as education, healthcare and lifestyle can be directly connected to post-development theory because these issues have progressed towards industrialized levels
(the standards possessed by industrialized countries) through the incorporation of post-development ideals.
His ideas later matured, and he joined the Ortodoxo Party (Party of the Cuban People), of which he became the leader in 1951. As Fidel Castro was running for elections, general Fulgencio Batista staged a coup d´etat, and established a dictatorship in Cuba.
The state of the Cuban healthcare system was vastly improved because of Fidel Castro's personal efforts. He immediately made drastic changes, the most important was his declaration of free healthcare for all Cuban citizens (Foss, 2007, p. 56). This translated into free dental care and eye care and prescriptions for all those in need. Castro also invested in new technological
advancements which further propelled the healthcare system.
In response, Fidel Castro favoured of armed revolution, and he joined underground groups attempting to overthrow the unpopular dictator. In 1953 he attacked with a group of 150 revolutionists, but failed and was captured.
Also, the lifestyle of the previously oppressed people was eminently improved. Castro increased minimum wage by doubling it for everyone. He gradually improved the economic system since its collapse due to the fall of the USSR. Cuba was reconstructed; moving from a segregated country to a unified body. The homeless rate vastly diminished and affordable housing was introduced
He was jailed until 1955 for conspiracy to overthrow the Cuban government. He used the years in jail to study political philosophy, history and literature, which strengthened his policy of change from corruption to social equality.
Since the 1950s, Fidel Castro ruled the country based on authoritarian principles. His successor Raúl Castro continued his policies such as detention of political dissidents, maintaining diplomatic distance from the US, and indulging in innumerable human rights violations. The state used violence and political power to
curtail political dissent, thus making life difficult
for them. For example
, leaders such as Orlando Zapata Tamayo, Guillermo Fariñas, and other political dissidents were imprisoned.
In 1955 he was granted amnesty and left for Mexico, where he trained a guerrilla group in Sierra Maestra aided by another well-known revolutionist; Che Guevara. They lived among the poor peasants, and were able to experience their difficulties, which again formed Fidel Castro's socialist politics.
Cuban leadership has been able to successfully resist the pressures of neoliberal globalization and maintain the island's economic independence... In a world dominated by neoliberal extremism, pundits and politicians long ago
predicted the quick and inevitable demise of Fidel Castro's government in the wake of the fall of the Berlin Wall. Yet the survival of Cuba under incredibly adverse circumstances, which includes the tightening of the U.S. economic blockade of the island, has been surprising and remarkable(Báez, 2004, p. 71).
While they were fighting in the mountains they were bombed with US planes, from which the guerrilla groups escaped unharmed from, but caused serious casualties among the poor peasants. At this time, there were many anti-Batista groups led by different leaders, but Fidel Castro's advantage was his clear ideological position, in contrast to other groups only focused on removing the dictator.
Authoritarianism has been a salient feature of the Cuban politics from the days of Fidel Castro to the present. Political dissent is deliberately suppressed and civil liberty is denied to citizens. Cuba needs to improve its human rights record. Internet has emerged as a threat to
authoritarianism in Cuba.
The Cuban military was aided by shiploads of arms from the United States, but as these ceased, Fidel Castro's group caught strength. In January 1959 Batista fled the country and Fidel Castro overtook the leadership.
It is true that authoritarianism is an important feature of the Cuban polity. Nevertheless, there are signs of change in the country, particularly with the emergence of the Internet era when members of civil society showed
interest to defend their rights, and communicate their views concerning government policies. The US has played its role in the spread of Internet among the masses. The Cuban State controls the Internet, but it has failed to completely dominate the digital world. For example
, citizens are allowed to create email accounts. Internet, consequently, emerged as a potent weapon in the hands of political dissidents who can express their discontent with the government. Citizens of Syria and Egypt benefited from Internet revolution, and this shows potentials of the Internet for the people of Cuba
During his initial speech, a white dove landed on his shoulder before the crowds. In the deep rooted superstition of Catholicism, this signified divine acceptance of the guerrilla leader.1 His strong personality overpowered the other revolutionist groups, and the people pledged to his promises of reforms and changes from the corrupt past of Fulgencio Batista.
The dove incident did not dupe Pope John XXIII who excommunicated Castro, an atheist, on January 3, 1962. In the 1990s, Pope John Paul II permitted Catholics to join the Cuban Communist Party which reversed the 1949 decree by Pope Pius XII forbidding Catholics from supporting communist governments.
Cuba has many interesting things to learn about. One of the many things we found interesting was Cuban folklore. We found two pieces of interesting folklore . They are called How El Bizarron Fooled the Devil and Martina the Beautiful Cockroach. We also found amazing art, music, and videos. They came from all over Cuba even know it is a small Country. Last, we found interesting facts about Cuba. One was about how there is dry seasons and wet seasons. As you can see, there is very many interesting things in Cuba to learn about.
Throughout his first period as the Head of the Cuban Armed Forces and later the Prime Minister of Cuba, he pushed through radically changing reforms such as the redistribution of wealth among the poor.
Cuban social issues have been a major topic of conversation for the past few decades. Castro's Cuba has been a victim of oriental discourses and stereotypes due to the state of American-Cuban relations. Based off the major influential ability of the United States much of
the world regards Cuba as a poor nation with inadequate public institutions. These misconceptions lack legitimacy and can be disproved through critical observation. Cuban social issues such as
healthcare, education and
lifestyle are perfect areas to examine to alter these artificial assumptions.
Together with Che Guevara, Fidel Castro developed a new theory; The New Man's Theory, which was basically that Cubans should no longer work for personal benefits, but for the good outcome for everybody in the society.
In Conclusion, Cuba is a very interesting Country. Cuba has many different Folklore. One of the many folklore was Martina the beautiful Cockroach. Next, we found that Cuba has many cool songs, music, and videos. One of the songs is in Spanish because Cuban language is Spanish
. Last, we found interesting facts about Cuba. Cuba is made up of alot of islands and bays. Cuba really is and amazing Country!
The literacy rate was increased remarkably, and almost all Cubans could have free quality health care. He also controlled strictly the ideological propaganda machinery of Cuba, putting out neighborhood watch groups and controlling the media, even banning such books as The Diary of Anne Frank. His ideology was basically socialistic; he wanted to redistribute wealth and gain back US controlled property in the nation, support social justice, strengthen the national identity, provide for economic independence, and clear the nation of damaging influence from powerful foreign nations in Cuba's affairs.
Our last thing we found interesting about Cuba is facts. There is over 4,000 islands and bays that share Cuba. This makes up 60% of Cuba. Another fact is Christmas wasn’t a national holiday until 1997. Pope John Paul wanted greater religious freedom. Last,Cuba has many different kinds of people. Cuba has a racial percentage of 65% of white people, 10% black, 20% mulatto, and 1% Chinese. As you can see, Cuba has many interesting facts.
In 1961, Cuba was declared a socialist nation. Tens of thousands from the higher class capitalists and Jews left for the United States.
Fidel Castro's opposition to the US influence and socialist ideology brought forth a collision between the two nations.
The belief in the role of modernization as the only force capable of destroying archaic superstitions and relations, at whatever social, cultural and political cost. Industrialization and urbanization were seen as the inevitable and necessary progressive routes to modernization. Only through material advancements could social, cultural
, and political change be achieved
He seized US owned businesses in Cuba and established contacts with the USSR. Therefore, the US broke all the former relations and began planning an invasion of Cuba in 1960, after having put a partial trade embargo on the nation (prohibiting all import except food and medication). The CIA trained Cuban exiles, which landed on the Bay of Pigs April 17th, 1961, was attempting to built up a counterrevolution in an attempt to overthrow the Cuban leader. But the Bay of Pigs invasion failed as the people backed up Fidel Castro and his politics. The US now attempted a military invasion from within the nation, where agents working for the US government tried to assassinate Fidel Castro several times.
During the Cold War, Cuba invited the USSR to established military bases on the island. When John F. Kennedy discovered the missiles, it led to the Cuban Missile Crisis, in which the US and the USSR almost went to war. After negotiating, the missiles were removed with the US promise of never invading Cuba. Castro could now develop his political ideas without fear of a US invasion.
Castro's foreign policy also included the support of revolutionary groups in other countries, like Nicaragua, Bolivia, El Salvador, and finally, the Venezuela of Hugo Chávez.
The first thing we found was Cuban Folklore. One of the two Folklore was called, How El Bizarron Fooled the Devil. This story is about a man who once outwitted the devil. The other folklore is called Martina the Beautiful Cockroach. This story is about a Cockroach that was looking for a husband that took her as she came. Last but not least, both of these folklore pieces are from Cuba. Both of these folklore pieces have different background stories
from Cuba. In Conclusion, Cuba has many folklore pieces, and these were only two of them many we saw!
As a communist, Castro's main foreign goal was to advocate liberation from wealthier nations' dominion over the poorer. He never submitted totally to all the communist ideologies from other strong nations, like the USSR, and he was reluctant to support revolution groups without clear ideologies. As a result of the US tactic of weakening the Cuban government with a trade barricade, other nations, some hostile to the USA, backed the Castro regime.
I have had a profound interest in Cuban history and issues since my aunt introduced me to the misconceptions floating around in North American society about the Cuban nation. Upon her return from visiting Cuba, she introduced me to the
fictitious discourses affecting Cuba today, primarily because of Cuban-American relations dating back decades. Therefore, I found it necessary to highlight the illegitimate orientalist discourse in Cuba because I believe Castro and Cuba have not been represented fairly to much of the first world.
In October 1973, Castro broke diplomatic relations with Israel after he deployed thousands of Cuban soldiers including helicopter pilots and tank crews to fight alongside the Syrians during the Yom Kippur War.
The government has ignored the problems of political dissidents, as proved by the death of Tamayo after his hunger strike in the prison. Political dissidents are imprisoned without any valid reason, and they are not allowed to defend their case, leading to emergence
of passive judiciary. Cuba’s relationship with the US has remained negative and such approach by the US and Cuba has not benefited large numbers of people who are prevented from leaving the country without obtaining official permission.
Hundreds of Palestinians have received military training in Cuba. In Havana, Castro gave Yasser Arafat his prestigious "Bay of Pigs Medal" in 1974.3, 4
The economy of Cuba continues to be very poor in comparison to the region's other nations.
Cuba traditionally has followed socialist ideology, as against capitalist philosophy of the US, leading to overt and covert conflict between the two nations. The country has violated human rights of citizens and political dissidents
. Leaders such as Raúl Castro used violence to reduce political dissent in the country.
The USSR provided the nation with financial aid, but when the USSR collapsed in the 90's, and with the US still enforcing the trading barricade from the 60's, Cuba lost their financial ally and the already poor economy collapsed. In a speech, Fidel Castro said that he knew no solution for the financial crisis, but promised the people to not surrender to a capitalist system enforced by a stronger wealthier nation, but to help the crisis, he allowed for some free trading and investments of other nations in Cuba.
I argue that Fidel Castro's government was extremely beneficial for Cuba. My hypothesis is can be proven accurate because post-development theory states that change can be deliberately directed through intervention.
As a result of black market trading, inflation occurred and Castro had to allow the use of foreign currencies. This destroyed the Cuban social and economic equality as a higher social group was formed. As a result of the falling economy, desperate riots broke out in old Havana, but Fidel Castro met the crowd face to face and allowed them to exile, which re-established the peace.
On February 24, 2008, the National Assembly of People's Power unanimously chose his brother, Raúl Castro, as Fidel's successor as President of Cuba.
A Tribute to a Revolutionary Leader: Fidel Castro
By Freedom Road Socialist Organization
On July 26, 1953, Fidel Castro stepped onto the stage of history, as he and other revolutionaries launched an attack on the Moncada Barracks of Cuban dictator Batista. After being captured, Castro made an eloquent defense of his action, saying, "history will absolve me." Less than six years later, Castro led the Cuban revolution to victory by overthrowing the corrupt and cruel U.S.-backed Batista dictatorship. This act alone - leading a revolutionary movement to victory on a small island just 90 miles off the coast of the U.S. - would be enough to make Fidel Castro an unforgettable hero in the struggle of oppressed people for liberation. But this was just the beginning of Fidel Castro's 49 years of contributions to the Cuban people's liberation and to oppressed people the world over.
Fidel Castro announced that he would not seek or accept the position of president or commander in chief in Cuba's February elections.
Next, Castro noticeably improved the educational system in Cuba. He reworked the entire education system so that it would not only meet but exceed international standards in-place around the world. Castro's changes effected every
grade from kindergarten to the university level. He set a precedence on math and science. This new system made education free to anyone, it even covered the cost of uniforms, books, tuition and even dorm fees (Castro, 2007, p. 358).
He said he would still devote his time to being a soldier in the "battle of ideas."
Freedom Road Socialist Organization would like to take this opportunity to recognize and honor Fidel Castro's lifetime of tireless dedication to fighting for liberation and building socialism. Fidel Castro led the Cuban revolution to victory in 1959 and has done the even more challenging and complex work of building socialism in Cuba through exceptional challenges.
Cuba's socialist revolution inspires people worldwide. In Latin America the example of Cuba has proven that it's possible to defy the U.S. in its own backyard and win. Cuba's internationalist solidarity with liberation struggles in Africa has earned it high respect there. And Cuba's missions of sending doctors and providing free health care to the poorest countries and people around the world has been a shining example of internationalism in practice.
Cuba's internationalism is built on the foundation of Cuban socialism. Cuba is a small, poor country. But Cuba is a sovereign country, so the Cuban people live with dignity. All Cubans have free health care and education. Cubans don't starve to death like poor people do every day all over the Third World. The infant mortality rate in Cuba is lower than in the United States. Cuba survives natural disasters such as hurricanes without widespread loss of life. All of this is due to socialism and collective organization of the Cuban people, under the leadership of the Communist Party. Fidel Castro's leadership and ability to inspire and mobilize the masses has played a great role in giving employment, health care and decent living conditions to the people of Cuba.
From the beginning, the Cuban revolution and Fidel personally came under attack by U.S. imperialism. All such attacks have been defeated. Fidel was the principal leader in defeating U.S. imperialism's attempted invasion of Cuba at the Bay of Pigs; he led Cuba through U.S. imperialism's nuclear blackmail during the 'Cuban missile crisis;' he has survived hundreds of CIA assassination attempts. He has led Cuba through decades of the cruel U.S. embargo. And he led Cuba through the 'special period' in the 1990s after the collapse of the Soviet Union led to the sudden loss of 85% of Cuba's foreign trade.
In that context of extreme hardship in the 1990s, Fidel Castro and the Communist Party of Cuba had little to gain and everything to lose from staying committed to socialism. But stay committed they did. They prepared and mobilized the masses of Cubans to hold on to their dignity despite extreme difficulties. Cubans survived the 1990s with their dignity and with socialism intact, emerging in the current decade with an increasingly strong and growing economy, while other Latin American countries that are dominated by U.S. imperialism are suffering. During its most difficult hour, Cuba was so committed to socialist values of putting people first that not a single school or hospital was closed.
Fidel Castro has stepped down as president and started the transition to the next stage of Cuba's leadership. His decision is creating a stable transition of power and insures the stability of the socialist project of the Cuban people.
In our country there were times when computer science wasn't even taught in universities. We moved gradually and we started in the universities. Then we created 170 youth clubs for computers...in our country the teachings of computer
science starts at the pre-school level. 100% of our children from
pre-school to university have computer labs (Castro, 2007, p. 358).
The Cuban people, with the leadership of the Cuban Communist Party and Raul Castro will continue building socialism in the 21st century.
We stand in solidarity with the Cuban Communist Party and the Cuban people. We reject the dreams of U.S. imperialism that tries to strangle the Cuban revolution with a trade embargo and continues to imprison five Cubans for their opposition to the terrorist plans of right-wing Cuban exiles in the United States. We call on the U.S. government to end the embargo and to free the Cuba 5! We say long live Fidel Castro and socialism in Cuba!
¡Viva Fidel Castro! ¡Viva la revolución Cubana! ¡Viva el socialismo!